Welcome to Day 11 of 20 Women in Scripture You Need to Know! I am excited about this series and hope it is an encouragement to both women and men to spend time studying the women in the Bible. We can learn much from them about how to live for the glory of God.
Naaman’s Servant: Never Too Young
October is Pastor Appreciation Month and, while every church we’ve served has handled that differently, one of my favorite things is when the children in our church write notes or make cards for Scott. Their words of encouragement and illustrations of what they think he does are priceless.
Children matter. They mattered to Jesus and they should matter to us. We need to be intentional about recognizing the way children can lead us as we serve in the Kingdom of God.
Today’s post is about a girl, a servant.
Naaman, commander of the army for the king of Aram, was a man important to his master and highly regarded because through him, the Lord had given victory to Aram. The man was a valiant warrior, but he had a skin disease.2 Kings 5:1-4 CSB
Aram had gone on raids and brought back from the land of Israel a young girl who served Naaman’s wife. She said to her mistress, “If only my master were with the prophet who is in Samaria, he would cure him of his skin disease.”
So Naaman went and told his master what the girl from the land of Israel had said.
These four verses are the sum of what we know about this little girl.
- We know she was an Israelite.
- We know she was captured in a Syrian raid.
- And we know she knew about Elisha.
While we do not know a lot of facts about this little girl, we can clearly see three important characteristics in her life, qualities we would all do well to develop and strengthen in our own lives as well.
Four Traits to Nurture
Courage — Can you just imagine this girl, maybe 12 or 13, going to her mistress and telling her she had a solution to a problem in the household? What courage! She took a great risk and we need to take note of that — sometimes we will need to be courageous.
What motivated her courage? I think we can see two qualities in this little girl that moved her to action.
Compassion — She saw a need and it moved her. We need to have compassion for others. And, please realize this, it isn’t a small thing. She had compassion for a man who was a leader in the military that invaded her country and removed her from her home. Compassion isn’t just reserved for those we love or agree with … we are called to be compassionate toward all people, following the example of Christ.
Faith — Do you see her faith? I wish we knew more about her and her family. Clearly her parents had modeled this sort of faith for her. And it had shaped her powerfully. Y’all, this is an important thing for us to remember as parents … our children will be shaped by what they see us do, good and bad. Let’s be mindful of our influence on them and the way it can impact the way they live out their faith, even when they are not in our homes.
Which leads me to the final trait we need to nurture as we learn from this young girl …
Influence — We all have spheres of influence. We all influence someone, probably multiple someones. This girl was impacted by the influence of her faith and it motivated her to move into action. We also need to be faithful to use our influence to point others to the Lord and to give Him glory.
A Lesson for Us
I’ve been thinking a lot about influence this week. Recent events have reminded me that what we do with our words and attitudes can often reach far beyond what we ever realize.
As we consider our influence and the potential to impact others for the Kingdom, we need to remember these traits of Naaman’s servant. She was bold but her actions were rooted in compassion and faith. When we do courageous things for the Kingdom, we must be moved by faith in Christ (not in ourselves!) but also by compassion for others. I think of Paul’s words to the church at Corinth:
If I speak human or angelic tongues but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so that I can move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give away all my possessions, and if I give over my body in order to boast but do not have love, I gain nothing.1 Corinthians 13:1-4 CSB
If we do all things without love, we’re just adding to the noise of our culture. And the last thing our world needs is more noise. Right?When we do courageous things for the Kingdom, we must be moved by faith in Christ (not in ourselves!) but also by compassion for others. Click To Tweet
A Prayer for Us
Father, may we be moved to act in our spheres of influence. Just as this little girl, young and vulnerable, spoke to Naaman’s wife with courage, may we be bold to share the hope and healing we can find only in Christ. Grant us hearts of compassion and ever growing faith as we seek to use our influence with wisdom. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
This post is part of the 20 Women in Scripture You Need to Know series. You can find every post indexed here.